Northern Ireland

Rugby rape trial: Woman 'did not seek help'

Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding arrive in court Image copyright Pacemaker
Image caption Paddy Jackson (left) and Stuart Olding arriving at court on Tuesday

A 21-year-old woman who claims she was raped by two Irish rugby players did not seek help when another woman walked in on the alleged attack, a court has heard.

She told Belfast Crown Court that she was "petrified" of being filmed.

Ulster teammates Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding both deny raping the woman in Belfast in June 2016.

In court on Monday, she was cross-examined by Mr Jackson's defence barrister.

"Why did you not ask for her help?" he asked.

"In that moment, I was so petrified of being recorded I just turned my head away," she said.

"It was too late. I had already been raped."

'Teasing' denied

The court has previously heard how the 19-year-old student had been attending an after-party at Jackson's Belfast house with a number of other men and women.

She agreed her first kiss with Mr Jackson in a bedroom was consensual, but said that did not mean she consented to anything else.

She rejected a suggestion that Mr Jackson left the room first because he "became tired" of her teasing.

She said she went downstairs after he tried to undo her trousers. She had already told the jury that she returned to the room to get her bag and claimed she was then raped.

Asked if this began with a second consensual kiss, she said: "That's completely incorrect."

Mr Jackson "wasn't taking no for an answer", she said.

"Everything about me was saying no physically.

"You cannot underestimate how scared you are in those situations."

When the barrister suggested this was "mutual sexual touching", she said that was "completely incorrect".

The lawyer asked why, when Stuart Olding opened the door, did she not ask for help.

"Because it was obvious what Stuart Olding's intention was as well," she replied.

She denied that she "motioned" towards Mr Olding and then performed oral sex on him.

"That was not how it worked out," she told the court, repeating that the sex was "non-consensual".

She also contested defence claims that she had taken her top off by "agreement".

"I was ordered to take my top off," she said. "I wanted it to be over, so I took my top off."

Image copyright Pacemaker
Image caption Ulster and Ireland players Iain Henderson and Rory Best attended the trial on Wednesday

Earlier the court was told that Ireland rugby captain Rory Best attended the rape trial last week because he was told to by a barrister involved in the case.

Judge Patricia Smyth told the jury at the court on Monday that "the only reason" that Mr Best attended the trial was that "he was directed to be here by senior counsel".

"I want to make it absolutely clear to you - and clear to the public - the only reason why Mr Rory Best was in this court last week was because he was directed to be here by senior counsel," said the judge.

"That's the only reason why he was here. And as a jury, you should know that."